Mo Mowlam, Gerry Adams, a Brazilian nun and a millionaire builder have been nominated by the public for the 2005 Tipperary Peace Prize, it emerged today.
Also on shortlist is Bono, the late Pope John Paul II, the McCartney sisters, the International Red Cross and assassinated Lebanese prime minister Rafik Hariri.
Murdered Baghdad aid worker Margaret Hassan was chosen as last year’s winner and her husband Tasheen Hassan accepted the award on her behalf.
Inaugurated in 1984, previous recipients of the annual award have included Nelson Mandela, Mikhail Gorbachev, Bill Clinton and Bob Geldof.
The Tipperary Peace Convention Committee will announce the winner on New Year’s Day and present the award in April.
Confirming the nominations, Tipperary Peace Committee spokesman Martin Quinn said: “We had a large response from the public. Any public figure who has worked to promote peace, justice or equality during 2005 is eligible for the prize.”
Ms Mowlam, who died after a long illness in August, was Northern Ireland Secretary during the 1998 Good Friday Agreement and later ran her own charity.
Sinn Fein leader and West Belfast MP Gerry Adams persuaded the IRA to end its armed campaign and complete decommissioning of its weapons during 2005.
Conservationist Sr Dorothy Stang, 73 was murdered in the Amazon rainforest in February. She had worked for the poor in Brazil since the early 1970s.
Millionaire builder Niall Mellon brings groups of workers to South Africa every year to build hundreds of homes for shanty town dwellers.
Already laden with other awards, the McCartney sisters spoke out against the IRA after their brother, Robert was stabbed and beaten to death in Belfast’s Short Strand last January.
Other nominees voted by the public include former Irish president and UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Mary Robinson who has been a recent critic of alleged CIA torture camps.
Mr Hariri was assassinated in Beirut last February and an United Nations investigation has just been completed on his death.
The late Pope had been due to pay a second visit to Ireland and this was later acknowledged by his successor, Pope Benedict XVI, who granted a private audience to Taoiseach Bertie Ahern within weeks of his new papacy.
U2 frontman Bono played a major role in organising this year’s Live 8 concerts calling for action from the G8 nations to cancel Third World debt, reform trade policies and grant more aid.
The International Red Cross set up relief operations in the tsunami disaster region in south ease Asia and in earthquake-hit Pakistan.